Best Picture: Waltz With Bashir
Best Director: Mike Leigh, Happy-Go-Lucky
Best Actress: Sally Hawkins, Happy-Go-Lucky
Best Actor: Sean Penn, Milk
Best Supporting Actress: Hanna Schygulla, The Edge of Heaven
Best Supporting Actor: Eddie Marsan, Happy-Go-Lucky
Best Screenplay: Happy-Go-Lucky
IndieWire has more details if you're interested. I'm pleased to see all the support for Mike Leigh's film since I love it, too. The ads for Slumdog Millionaire describe it as a "buoyant hymn to life" but if that blurby phrase describes any movie this year, surely it's Happy-Go-Lucky?! Four things about this latest batch of awards spring out immediately:
- Between WALL•E taking the Los Angeles prize and Waltz With Bashir taking this one, it's been a banner year for critical support of the animated form.
- I've underestimated the possible Academy support of Happy-Go-Lucky (they've embraced three previous Mike Leigh efforts). Could Eddie Marsan actually have a shot at the fifth spot in Supporting Actor? Right now it seems like a toss-up between James Franco & Dev Patel with Michael Shannon siphoning off crucial votes but could we get an actual surprise nominee? Big surprises don't happen often but you never know.
- The season-long critical backing of Sally Hawkins (my interview with the actress here) should cement her place in the Oscar Actress line-up... and yet... and yet... that category is still very difficult to measure for a number of reasons. In any year when there's a lot of contestants in play this late in the game, you can sometimes end up with big surprises. Think 2003's Best Actress lineup which confounded every pundit and probably surprised the nominated and the snubbed, too, once the names were read.
- Since most Oscar ballots are returned to the Academy in the first week and they were mailed out 9 days ago this doesn't have much direct influencing power beyond underlining the critical mood, which is very pro-Happy...
If you think you're free from awardage, think again. The Guilds start announcing in full force on Monday. They're the best indicator we'll get of the Academy's mood this year.